Time to book it to Chicago! The 2018 Chicago Flower & Garden Show, with a theme of “FLOWERTALES: Every Garden Has a Story to Tell,” interprets the unique role flowers, plants and gardens play in the stories of our lives. As planning for the story-themed 2018 Chicago Flower & Garden Show is well underway, a new chapter of this legacy event begins with re-designing the show’s traditional nine-day run to five days. The show runs Wednesday, March 14 through Sunday, March 18, 2018 at Navy Pier, with extended daily hours from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. The popular “Evening in Bloom” charity preview will be held from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 13, featuring a floral fashion show, “Hort Couture.”
The Chicago Flower & Garden Show’s own story began in 1847 as a flower and fruit exposition. One of the oldest of its kind in the country, the Chicago Flower & Garden Show was also one of the first consumer shows held at Navy Pier when it first opened to the public in 1916.
Since its earliest days, the Chicago Flower & Garden Show reinvents itself every year to help millions of visitors from all over the country find relaxation, inspiration, education and motivation for enhancing their own outdoor spaces, while cultivating the next generation of gardener. The story continues in 2018, when the Chicago Flower & Garden Show partners with Bernie’s Book Bank, a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase book ownership among at-risk children.
“Bernie’s Book Bank will open the show with an exciting entrance garden that celebrates the rich experiences books and gardens bring to our lives, from childhood through adulthood,” says Tony Abruscato, show owner and director. “They’ll also set the tone for the show, with 24-plus experiential gardens and a newly redesigned Home & Garden Marketplace.”
Following a successful 2017 show that drew 40,000 visitors, the 2018 Chicago Flower & Garden Show will feature display gardens and vignettes showcasing roses, tulips, edibles, small spaces, water features and urban design. Visitors will experience gardens from the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences, Racine Zoo, Rosborough Partners, Suntory Plants, Chicago Sculpture Exhibit, Aquascape, Women’s Journey in Fiber and more, as well as window boxes from Garden Clubs of Illinois and tablescapes by noted event and floral designers.
In addition to the two dozen walkable gardens built by the industry’s notable professionals, the revamped Chicago Flower & Garden Show includes daily presentations led by nationally-renowned experts, daily celebrity chef demonstrations in the Garden Gourmet area, daily roll-up-your-sleeves-and-do container Potting Parties and ongoing Stem Studio cut-flower
arranging classes. The popular Kids Activity Garden will return, along with the show’s all-new “Get Growing” educational series, featuring interactive how-to performances, workshops and seminars led by regional and national industry experts and authors.
Flower Show Productions, the parent company of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show, is launching its Get Growing Foundation™, a non-profit organization whose purpose is cultivating and growing a love of learning about gardening and horticulture. Proceeds from the foundation will support the show’s educational programming and year-long public outreach initiatives.
“I am excited about the newly designed 2018 Chicago Flower & Garden Show, which will feature an action-packed series of performances, demonstrations and presentations with celebrity gardeners, chefs, designers and more. Plus, there’s always plenty of fun for children and families, plus added evening activities for couples and singles including a wedding expo and craft beer tasting with discounted evening tickets,” Abruscato says adding, “The 2018 Chicago Flower & Garden Show will open a new chapter in the show’s history, while continuing to bloom brilliantly with even more how-to’s, experts, experiences and inspiration.”
For year-round good-gardening information, show schedules, travel information, individual and group ticket discounts, and more, visit www.chicagoflower.com and subscribe to the show’s e-newsletter. The show is easily found on all social media sites by searching “chicagoflower.”
The Chicago Flower & Garden Show is host to the following organizations: Gardener Writers Association of America regional conference, North Central American Institute of Floral Designers conference, Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences partner breakfast, American Society of Landscape Architects monthly mixer, membership events for the Chicago Chamber of Commerce and more!